PERSISTENCE

APRIL 2
 
 Staying with it-that’s what God requires. Stay with it to the end. You won’t be sorry. (Matthew 24: 13 TM)
 
Abraham Lincoln said, “Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm. Elbert Hubbaid wrote, “There is no defeat, except in no longer trying; no really insurmountable barrier, save our own inherent weakness of purpose.
 
Charles Lindbergh said, “Success is not measured by what a man accomplishes, but by the opposition he encountered and the courage he maintained in his struggle against It.
 
The University of Chicago conducted a five-year survey of twenty top performers in various fields, including musicians, athletes, sculptors, mathematicians, physicians, actors, artists, scholars, and,chief executives. They also interviewed the families and teachers of these celebrated high-achievers to find out how they did It.
 
What they discovered was that drive and determination-not-talent-led to their success! Imagine that! Just plain old stick-to- it-iveness!
 
Anybody who ever did anything worthwhile persevered. The Master Teacher himself gives us the formula for success m these words:
 
 
 “STAYING WITH IT-THAT’S WHAT GOD REQUIRES. STAY WITH IT TO THE END. You WON’T BE SORRY” (MATTHEW 24:13 TM).

From THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR TODAY.  

Q: What do you call someone who can’t stick with a diet?
 

A: A deserter. ..   The old pastor made it a practice to visit the parish school one day a week.He walked into the 4th grade class, where the children were studying the states, and asked them how many states they could name. They came up with about 40 names. He jokingly told them that in his day students knew the names of all the states. One lad raised his hand and said, “Yes, but in those days there were only 13.” …



DO YOU FEEL USED?

April 1
 
 The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid what can man do to me? (Hebrews 13:6 NIV)
 
When your trust has been betrayed, you feel angry and want to strike back. Something inside you cries, It’s not fair! You want to even the score.        .
 
Don’t do it! ‘Turn to Jesus instead! He, too, was betrayed, so He understands. Through this you can learn how to forgive and become more gracious. Don’t sink to the level of the person who hurt you. Take the high road!
 
When David’s friends turned against him, he first prayed, “Tell me what to do, 0 Lord. “Then he continued, “I am expecting the Lord to rescue once again I will see his goodness to me” (Psalm 27:11-13 TLB). Cry out to God for help, and then be confident that He’lI answer you!
 
Go Ahead – ask Him to help you forgive those who’ve turned against you. Don’t let bitterness rob you of the wisdom you can gain through this or the blessings that await you on the other side of it.
 
When you think you’ll never be able to trust again, that is when you must place your trust in God and let Him heal your heart and mind, Pray; “Father, I am hurt, but I won’t let it infect my spirit or destroy my faith in You.
 
I NEED TO FORGIVE THOSE WHO HAVE BETRAYED ME. I DO SO TODAY IN YOUR NAME. AMEN.”
 

From THE BEST OF THE WORD FOR TODAY.  

What did one ocean say to the other ocean? Nothing, they just waved.
 

  ​A strawberry and a cucumber grew up in the same garden patch. They were best buds growing up. As they grew older, they decided it was time to branch out, leave home, and see the world. So they hitched a ride on a nearby vegetable cart and took off. Their first stop was at a local farmer’s market. Unfortunately, that’s where the trouble started. A big row broke out and they got separated, one of them ending up in a jam and the other in a pickle. …



MORE ABOUT WALKING WITH GOD

MARCH 29
 
… Walk worthy of the calling with which you were called. (Ephesians 4:1 NKJV)
 
The moment you say yes to God, and move in obedience to His voice, He gives you the ability to perform His will. He doesn’t give it to YOU first, then call you next; no. He calls you; then, as you step out and obey Him, He imparts it to you. God is never content with the status quo. Never! Every day in countless ways He’ll call you, mold you, and develop you into a greater and greater likeness of His Son.
 
You see, you’re not out for a stroll-you’re going somewhere! God has a destiny in mind for you! Every day you’ll be given new experiences and put into situations that’ll mature you to the point where you have … the same attitude … the same perspective … and the same discernment as Him.
 
When you understand that, walking with God will take on a whole new meaning. You’ll realize that your walk with Him is the only walk that will ever satisfy you, or fulfill your purpose for being on this Earth.
 

YOU’LL ALSO EXPERIENCE THE GREATEST JOY YOU’VE EVER KNOWN-AND BRING CREDIT TO HIS NAME

EVERY DAY!
 
Taken from THE BEST OF WORD FOR TODAY
 

 

​A pastor parked his car in a no-parking zone in a large city because he was short of time and couldn’t find a space with a meter.Then he put a note under the windshield wiper that read: “I have circled the block 10 times. If I don’t park here, I’ll miss my appointment. Forgive us our trespasses.”When he returned, he found a citation from a police officer along with this note “I’ve circled this block for 10 years. If I don’t give you a ticket I’ll lose my job. Lead us not into temptation.” …
 

  DID NOAH FISH? A Sunday school teacher asked, “Johnny, do you think Noah did a lot of fishing when he was on the Ark?””No,” replied Johnny. “How could he, with just two worms.” …



CALL IT GRACE

MARCH 28
 
I am the Lord … the merciful and gracious God. (Exodus 34:6 NLT)
 
God loves you just as you are, but He loves you too much to let you stay that way! Do you think God’s love for you would be stronger, if your faith was stronger? If so, you’re confusing God’s love with human love. Human love increases with performance and decreases with mistakes. But not God’s love. He loves you just as you are.
 
Having trouble accepting that? Listen to how God introduces himself: “I am the Lord, the merciful and gracious God. I am slow to anger and rich in unfailing love and faithfulness” (Exodus 34:6 NLT). In spite of failures, David could say, “I will sing of the mercies of the Lord forever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations” (Psalm 89:1). Need more to convince you? Paul writes, “God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners” (Romans 5:8 NLT).
 
Get rid of your do-it-yourself righteousness! Salvation’s not, “Do! Do! Do!”lt’s, “Done! Done! Done!” It’s a finished work; therefore, you can stand before Christ in His name and not your own. Perhaps you’re thinking, This sounds too easy. Wrong! There was nothing easy about it! The cross was heavy, the blood was real, and the price was staggering. It would have bankrupted you or me, so He paid it for us.
 
CALL IT SIMPLE:-CALL IT A GIFT-CALL IT WHAT IT IS: GRACE:!
 
Taken from THE BEST OF WORD FOR TODAY
 

 

The Child is brilliant.  No one else would have thought of the answers he gave and by the way they were all correct.  Depends on your mind set.
 

STUDENT WHO OBTAINED 0% ON AN EXAM* I would have given him 100%!  * Each answer is absolutely grammatically correct, and funny too. *

The teacher had no sense of humor. (cont’d)
 

  Q7.. What looks like half an apple?*

* The other half*
 

  Q8.. If you throw a red stone into the blue sea what will it become?*

* Wet*
 

  Q9.. How can a man go eight days without sleeping?*

* No problem, he sleeps at night.*
 

  Q10. How can you lift an elephant with one hand?*

*   You will never find an elephant that has one hand.*
 

  Q11. If you had three apples and four oranges in one hand and four apples and three oranges in other hand, what would you have?*

* Very large hands*
 

  Q12. If it took eight men ten hours to build a wall,  how long would it take four men to build it?*

*No time at all, the wall is already built.*
 

  Q13. How can you drop a raw egg onto a concrete floor without cracking it?*

*Any way you want, concrete floors are very hard to crack.*
 

Spread some laughter, share the cheer.  Let’s be happy, while we’re here!



A NEW MEASURING ROD

MARCH 27
 
Among you, those who are the greatest should take the lowest rank, and the leader should be like a servant. (Luke 22:26 NLT)
 
In this devotional we often write about goal setting, perseverance, motivation, and destiny. And we should-for without a goal, a strategy, and a committed heart, you’ll never fulfill your life’s purpose.
 
But in your quest for success and recognition, Jesus gives you a new measuring rod. Listen: “Normally the master sits at the table and is served …. But not here! For I am your servant” (Luke 22:27 NLT).
 
In Jesus’ day, foot-washing was a task reserved not just for servants, but for the lowest ranking among them. Every group has its pecking order, and household workers back then were no exception. The servant at the bottom was expected to be on his knees with the towel and basin.
 
What a sight. The one here with the towel and basin is Jesus! The hands that formed the stars now wash away street filth. The fingers that formed the mountains now dry the rough feet of common fishermen. Hours before His death, Jesus’s singular concern is to make sure the disciples know that in His Kingdom the way up is down, and the way to the top is not through intelligence or manipulation, but through humility and service. Living that way is not natural-it’s supernatural!
 
YOU CAN ONLY DO IT AS YOU SURRENDER DAILY TO THE INDWELLING POWER OF HIS SPIRIT.
 
Taken from THE BEST OF WORD FOR TODAY
 

 

The Child is brilliant.  No one else would have thought of the answers he gave and by the way they were all correct.  Depends on your mind set.
 
STUDENT WHO OBTAINED 0% ON AN EXAM*
 

I would have given him 100%!  * Each answer is absolutely grammatically correct, and funny too. *

The teacher had no sense of humor. :)*
 

  Q1.. In which battle did Napoleon die?*

* his last battle*
 

  Q2.. Where was the Declaration of Independence signed?*

* at the bottom of the page*
 

  Q3.. River Ravi flows in which state?*

* liquid*
 

  Q4.. What is the main reason for divorce?*

* marriage*
 

  Q5.. What is the main reason for failure?*

* exams*
 

  Q6.. What can you never eat for breakfast?*

* Lunch & dinner*
 


HOW TO HAVE A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD

MARCH 26
 
I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge. (John 5:30)
 
Jesus spent three and a half years showing us how to build a relationship with God. He didn’t respond to need. He only responded to the Father. Listen to these words; “I can’t do a solitary thing on my own; 1 listen, then I decide” (John 5:30 TM). The King James Version says, “As I hear, I judge.” What a way to live. When you hear from God, people can no longer control you or set your agenda. Unmet needs can no longer discourage you, for you’re listening to one voice only-His.
 
Jesus spent whole nights in prayer, and often rose before dawn to pray. What was He doing? Making deposits early in the morning, so that He could make withdrawals all day long.
 
Listen again: “For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does” (John 5 :20 NKJV). You don’t reveal yourself to just anyone-only to those with whom you’re intimate.
 
Power flows from intimacy. Wisdom flows from intimacy. Authority flows from knowing you’ve been with God.
 
The Bible tells us that Jesus called the disciples to be with Him, and then He sent them out from Him. Don’t try to go out for Him until you’ve first spent time with Him.
 

DON’T TRY TO BUILD A MINISTRY UNTIL YOU’VE FIRST BUILT A RELATIONSHIP, AND IF THAT MEANS

REARRANGING YOUR PRIORITIES, THEN DO IT.
 
Taken from THE BEST OF WORD FOR TODAY
 

 

​My brother was recently launched into the “real world” and shocked by the expenses that came with it. He was complaining about the high cost of auto insurance.”If you got married,” teased my dad, “the premium would be lower.” He smiled. “That would be like buying an airline just to get free peanuts.” 
 

  “What is that sound?” a woman asked at our nature center. “It’s the frogs trilling for a mate,” Patti, the naturalist, explained. “We have a pair in the science room. But since they’ve been together for so long, they no longer sing to each other.” The woman nodded sympathetically, “The trill is gone.” …



YOUR TIME HAS COME

March 25
 
None of my words will be delayed any longer. (Ezekiel 12:28 NIV)
 
The Living Bible says, “All delay has ended! I will do it now!” Rejoice, child of God, your delivery date has come. The waiting is over. God is about to answer your prayer.
 
When Peter was imprisoned, the Church began praying around the clock. It worked. The angel of the Lord came and delivered Peter to the very door where they were praying. But when they heard Peter was at the door, they said, “It couldn’t he.” When it was confirmed, they said, “It must he an angel.” Finally, when they saw him, Scripture says, “They were astonished” (Acts 12: 16). They were praying, but not believing. They were locked into a posture of asking, but not expecting. Maybe that’s where you are, expecting little or nothing. Today God is saying to you, The answer is knocking at your door, go and open it.
 
Don’t wait until the walls fall-shout now. When praise fills your mouth, expectation will fill your heart, and God will move on your behalf When God gives you a word, act on it! Before their prison doors opened, Paul and Silas filled the place with praise, for that produces a climate in which faith can grow. So start praising Him now for what He is about to do.
 

 

HIS WORD TO YOU TODAY IS, “ALL DELAY HAS ENDED. I WILL DO IT NOW!”
 
Taken from THE BEST OF WORD FOR TODAY
 

 

​Before a burglary trial, the judge explained to the defendant, “You can let me try your case, or you can choose to have a jury of your peers.” The man thought for a moment –“What are peers?” he asked.” They’re people just like you, your equals.” “Forget it,” retorted the defendant. “I don’t want to be tried by a bunch of thieves.” ​ .
 

 

Don’t challenge Death to a pillow fight, …Unless you want to deal with the Reaper cushions.  ..
 


THE GENTLENESS OF JESUS

MARCH 22
 
A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench. (Isaiah 42:3)
 
I love to talk about Jesus, and I find myself increasingly wanting to be around others who love to talk about Him, too. It’s a growing hunger that’s becoming an obsession. Today I saw another wonderful thing about Him; Isaiah says, “A bruised reed shall he not break and the smoking flax: shall he not quench.” Can you think of anything more worthless than a bruised reed that people have trampled on?
 
Jesus will not walk by it, and He will not walk on it. He’ll stop and gently strengthen it in the broken places, and then He’ll straighten It up so It can grow again.
 
Can you picture anything more useless than a smoldering wick that once burned brightly? But watch how Jesus works; He carefully pours fresh oil into the empty lamp, and then gently blows on the flax until it ignites again.
 
I don’t know about you, but I’ve been a bruised reed and a smoking flax, and when I couldn’t reach up, He reached down and lifted me from hopelessness and despair. He made me strong in the broken places, and fanned the smoldering flax into a flame of love. And He’s done itnfor you, too, hasn’t He?  
 
TAKE A FEW MOMENTS TODAY AND TELL HIM HOW MUCH YOU LOVE HIM.
 
From The Best of The Word for Today
 

 

It’s Saint Patrick’s day and an armed hooded robber bursts into the Bank of Ireland and forces the tellers to load a sack full of cash. On his way out the door with the loot one brave Irish customer grabs the hood and pulls it off revealing the robber’s face.
 
The Robber Shoots the Guy Without Hesitation!
 
He then looks around the bank to see if anyone else has seen him. One of the tellers is looking straight at him and the robber walks over and calmly shoots him also.
 
Everyone by now is very scared and looking down at the floor.
 
Did anyone else see my face?’ screams the robber.
 

There is a few moments of silence then one elderly Irish gent, looking down, tentatively raises his hand and says, ‘I think me wife may have caught a glimpse.’



GRACIOUS WORDS

MARCH 21
 
 The words of a wise man’s mouth are gracious. (Ecclesiastes 10:12)
 
Sometimes gifted and busy people can be harsh or unkind without meaning to be. They live by a schedule, and they get upset when others fail to respect it. But not Jesus. He had the most important job in the world, and yet He stopped for children and spent time with them. Sometimes the only people who matter to us are those who further our goals. That’s not ambition; it’s selfishness!
 
Jesus had many opportunities to ingratiate himself with the rich and powerful, and He did have friends among them. But mostly He gave himself to common folks. He was so secure in His identity and clear in His purpose that He spent time lifting “losers” like Mary Magdalene.
 
The law of kindness governed His words, and He taught this law to His disciples. Listen: “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you” (Matthew 5:44). When I read those words, my heart cries, “Help! I fall so far short of this goal. “Jesus didn’t berate Peter when he failed-he restored him and made him a leader in the Church. He didn’t degrade Thomas for doubting. He strengthened him.
 
 TODAY, ASK GOD TO HELP YOU STAY COOL UNDER FIRE, AND BE GRACIOUS TO THOSE YOU MEET.
 
From The Best of The Word for Today
 

 

O’Malley was leaving his favourite bar when he was run over by a bus. He gets to the gates of heaven and St. Peter tells him he cannot enter unless he passes a test. What choice did he have, O’Malley agrees to try as he never was the brightest bulb in the box.
 
St. Peter decides to go easy on him, ‘What has 5 fingers and is made of black leather?’ he asks. O’Malley scratches his head, thinks hard and finally gives up. ‘It’s a glove says St. Peter.’
 
Let’s try again. ‘What has 10 fingers and is made of black leather?’ asks St. Peter. O’Malley is clearly stumped. After a few minutes of pacing in a circle and scratching his head, O’Malley gives up. ‘Why it’s 2 gloves – don’t you see 10 fingers, black leather, says St. Peter amazed.’ Being in a generous mood, St. Peter decides to give O’Malley yet another chance but thinking of an even easier question.
 
‘Who is the patron Saint of Ireland?’ asks St. Peter, thinking he can’t miss this.
 

‘It wouldn’t be 3-gloves, would it?’ says O’Malley.



WHATEVER IT COSTS – IT’S WORTH IT

MARCH 20
 
The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. (Romans 8: 18)
 
This morning I was reading about Paul’s calling. It’s different from much of what I hear today. Listen: “He is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake” (Acts 9:15-16). What’s this? Suffer great things for My name? I thought I was signing up to be prospered, not pulverized. Think again! The blessing of God doesn’t exempt you from attack; it equips you to handle it. His grace is what carries you through it. Paul spent all but seven years of his ministry in prison. Where did you get the idea that it’s fun being a Christian? You can have joy in jail, and fellowship in suffering, but if you pose any threat to the devil, then get ready for attack, because it’s coming. The important part is not what’s going on around you; it’s what is going on within you. Listen: “What we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will give us later” (Romans 8: 18 TLB).
 
REJOICE, YOU’RE PART OF AN ARMY DESTINED TO WIN, AND A KINGDOM THAT’S GOING TO PREVAIL.
 
From The Best of The Word for Today
 

 

An Englishman, a Scotsman and an Irishman were without tickets for the opening ceremonies of the summer Olympics but hoped to be able to talk their way in at the gate.  Security was very tight, however, and each of their attempts was met with a stern refusal.
 
While wandering around outside the stadium, the Englishman came upon construction site, which gave him an idea. Grabbing a length of scaffolding, he presented himself at the gate and said, ‘Johnson, the pole vault, ‘and was admitted.
 
The Scotsman, overhearing this, went at once to search the site. When he came up with a sledge hammer, he presented himself at the gate and said, ‘McTavish, the hammer.’ He was also admitted.
 

The Irishman combed the site for an hour and was nearly ready to give up when he spotted his ticket in. Seizing a roll of barbed wire, he presented himself at the gate and announced, ‘O’ Sullivan, fencing.’




 

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